Real hit back at doping allegations

The Primera Division outfit have issued a denial of involvement in 'irregular practices' in the wake of claims made by their former club president Inaki Badiola
Real Sociedad have published an official statement on their website to deny involvement in doping practices.

Former Real president Inaki Badiola claimed on Monday that the Basque club bought banned substances during a six-year period between 2001 and 2007 and reports in Spain have also linked the club with the the sports doctor, Eufemiano Fuentes.

However, the Basques have now hit back and have insisted that they are in no way involved in the ongoing Operacion Puerto trial of Fuentes.

"Since the current board took the responsibility of managing the club on December 20, 2008, it can guarantee there have been no irregular practices," the statement read.

"No-one from Real Sociedad has been called to appear as a witness in the Operacion Puerto trial, and the club was at no stage involved in proceedings.

"Real Sociedad show their total willingness to collaborate actively with the relative organisations with the aim of clearing up the facts which the information refers to and highlights the club's zero tolerance of doping practices."

Spanish Football League [LFP] president Jose Luis Astiazaran, who was in charge of Sociedad between 2001 and 2005, rejected Badiola's claims on Monday evening and threatened legal action against the 48-year-old.

On Tuesday, El Pais published documents which it claimed were linked to Fuentes and Operacion Puerto and included the abbreviation "R SOC" - purportedly relating to Real Sociedad.

"No comment," Fuentes replied to reporters on Monday when asked about the abbreviation. Questioned before Badiola's revelations on Friday, however, he had joked: "It reminds me of a good wine."